Pet Insurance Claims
The Animal Rehabilitation Centre advocates pet insurance to safeguard access to veterinary care for all pets. We will do everything we can to make claiming on an insurance policy as straightforward for you as possible. This includes permitting direct claims with most insurers (where the insurers pay us direct, rather than you having to pay first and then reclaim the money from the insurer often much later), and unlike some centres we do not make a charge for dealing with and processing insurance claims, despite the often substantial amount of time and paperwork involved.
However, there are some aspects of pet insurance and the claims procedure that all clients should be aware of, which we would like to draw your attention to in order to ensure your pet’s claim is dealt with as rapidly and smoothly as possible:
- There are many different insurance companies offering pet policies, and even the bigger more well-known companies offer several different levels of cover for different premiums. This means that we cannot tell you exactly what your pet is covered for, because it depends on the exact private financial contract between you and the insurance company. We advise you to read your policy schedule carefully prior to beginning a claim, and if in doubt please bring the schedule with you or even better call the company for clarification if needed.
- In order to make a claim, we require a claim form on each occasion. Please bring a form regularly to allow us to do this. As a guideline, on the first visit and every couple of weeks or 3-4 visits thereafter is usually appropriate.
- It is important that we submit your claim as promptly as possible. Many insurers will decline claims where they have not been notified promptly of the pet’s problem, and in addition many are very tardy in processing claims. It sometimes takes us months to reclaim money owed by insurance companies, so a prompt start ensures any queries or extra requests by the insurer can be immediately attended do and do not give the insurer a reason to stall payment.
- The Financial Services Act prevents us by law from dealing directly with your insurance company unless they contact us directly and we have the permission of both parties to do so. This means that we are unable to effectively chase claims or enquiries on your behalf. If you have not been notified within a few days of a claim being submitted to your insurer of their decision, you should contact the company directly to check on their progress in dealing with it. Regardless of whether your pet is insured or not, responsibility for the pet’s bill rest with you and we will take steps to pursue outstanding amounts which may include use of a debt recovery service if these are not forthcoming.
- Where pets are insured with a Donaldsons Vets policy, immediate telephone access to the claims team allows confirmation of cover straight away and claim settlement within 3-5 days, and clients can be assured of a very simple and rapid process.
If you are unsure about any aspect of making a claim on your pet’s insurance policy, please ask for advice as soon as possible. Claim forms for patients receiving treatment at the Animal Rehabilitation Centre will be completed by our staff- if dropped in at other branches of Donaldsons Vets please mark them for our attention. Prior treatment from Donaldson Vets can still be included on such forms; it is not necessary to send separate forms in unless your pet was treated at another veterinary practice or specialist centre.